Philippine Nurses Association (PNA) has called on the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) to protect the nurses from poor working conditions of the United Doctors Medical Center (UDMC) last June 11, 2019.
DOLE promised to intervene and provide due process for the issue. Mandatory conferences are currently being held to address the situation.
UDMC employees have been grappling with the institution’s unjust working conditions for months. Among the poor practices employees experience are salaries that have gone unpaid for more than four months, unremitted deducted SSS and Pag-Ibig premiums, shifts that stretch from 24 to 48 hours, and understaffed units that result in severely disproportionate nurse-patient ratios.
To financially support themselves, many former employees left the hospital to find better prospects. Those who cannot leave, meanwhile, have exhausted means to bring the horrendous practices to light such as social media. A Facebook post by employees on the matter caught the attention of PNA and other employees personally reached out to the organization through the Nurse’s Pulse. Nurses of the UDMC hope the PNA can help in bringing their situation to light and attain justice.
As an organization of and for nurses, the situation is the organization’s concern for the employees. Not only are deplorable working conditions detrimental to the well-being of nurses, but poor labor practices in health institutions place risks to public safety and public health. With all this considered, the PNA cannot remain silent on the matter.
Upon receiving the concerns, PNA reached out to UDMC management to validate facts and hear their side of the story. The management, unfortunately, refused to coordinate and gave no response to the accusations.
In response, the PNA alerted DOLE to engage in the matter and has arranged for dialogue with DOLE representatives and UDMC nurses for further investigation.
PNA introduced Nurse’s Pulse on May 1, 2019 as a platform for Filipino nurses and give them a voice that would be heard by all. Nurse’s Pulse aims to serve as a nursing “HELP-line”. Additionally, the platform also serves as a venue for nurses to submit encouraging stories and tales of triumph they want to share with the public. To reach the Nurse’s Pulse, one can email them at firstname.lastname@example.org. (By Hazel Vera Tan, PNA)